October 27, 2010

Where You Choose to Focus

There are choices I make every day. Choices about where I lie down, when I take a drink from my water bowl, when to bark at the crows on the fence, and when to look at the camera and when to look at something else. Gretchen finds that when she looks through the camera that what she chooses to focus on isn’t always what the camera wants to focus on. If she had more time, she’d really play around with her camera and see what it can actually do, but since her hands are usually tangled in leashes and she’s constantly saying things like “Stay” “Sit” “Treats!” and anything else she can think of to get us to look at the camera, she hasn’t had much time to play with her camera.

Therefore she takes a moment to focus on the snow in the mountains and ends up instead with the camera focusing on the cones on the tree.

Some things are just out of her control.

This is a lesson she’s still learning. I guess it’s still a lesson I’m still learning. And oddly, whenever we make an awareness like this (an almost epiphany) the lesson repeats itself all day long. It started this morning on a walk with Monty. The air was clean having been washed and rinsed for the past few days and the sky was that kind of blue that only shows up in October. We were all enjoying our stroll when those busy squirrels decided to race across our path again and again and again.

I suppose Monty and I could have focused on something other than the squirrels — the falling leaves, the green grass thick with scents, the joggers and cyclists passing us by — but no, we focused on those squirrels and Gretchen held on tight.

And then, I had a vet appointment and I could have focused on how nervous I was when the doctor started doing her adjustments on my back, but instead I focused on how good it felt and then on the sad news that her dog was very ill. It was rather surreal — to be enjoying her work all the while feeling bad for her “pal” struggling to survive. We send her healing thoughts and hope that she got to spend time with her canine family. She’s a wonderful doctor and while I still squirm a bit when it’s time for me to be worked on, I trust her hands and knowledge and her deep sense of compassion. Any dog who lives with her is very, very lucky.

On a lighter note, I could have focused on the fact that for breakfast I got served last night’s dinner that I didn’t eat, but instead, I focused on the morsels of Monty’s food Gretchen plopped into my bowl. Monty didn’t take the time to focus on anything in his food bowl. He just ate and ate and ate and the next thing you know, he was done. He’s a culinary inspiration.

Oshi and Perrito focused on the fact that the sun was out and they didn’t have to bundle up. Instead, they lounged on the warm rocks and watched the squirrels from afar (and yes, Gretchen was saying, “Stay” over and over in an attempt to get the perfect shot!).

Gertie, Monty, and I had a hard time focusing in one direction…

…there was so much going on during our photo shoot.

The mountains in the background were begging for a glance, the squirrels climbing the trees across the street were teasing us with each flick of their tails, and Gertie could hardly wait for her reward for sitting/lying so calmly while the chaos of the world swirled around us.

Of course, Gertie kind of focused on the leaves on my head. She thought I looked funny.

Hm, I don’t quite see the humor in it all, but we all focus on something different, don’t we?

I’m gonna miss that Gertie…but I’m not going to focus on that now…we still have two more days of walking her.

Gemma and Saber can’t focus on anything other than each other. Because of that they needed to burn their energy off at the tennis courts before a walk was even possible. I miss those tennis courts, but the doctor has sworn me off of them and because I like my doctor so much (and I’m feeling better), I’m avoiding the courts.

But not these two…

Later, when we were done with the walking and lying around the house, Monty decided to focus on the vacuum cleaner and I focused on Monty. He does not like the vacuum cleaner. It took me a bit of time to figure it out, but wherever the vacuum went, Monty headed in the other direction. Poor guy. But then we waited outside and I rolled around in the green grass while Monty tried to remove his look of concern.

The house is pretty clean (thanks Gretchen), dinner is cooking on the stove (well, mine is cooked and just waiting for my supplements), and the clouds are moving in. But I’m going to focus on the warm feeling I have inside knowing I have a doctor who understands that loving a dog is one of the greatest gifts in the world, friends (canine and human) who enjoy me as much as I enjoy them, and a family who focuses on sharing their love with me.

Until tomorrow,


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